Assam patient trapped in Chennai pays Rs 1.6 lakh, travels 2,700 km to get home

GUWAHATI: An Assam school teacher, who had gone to Apollo Hospitals in Chennai to receive treatment from his father and was stranded there due to the confinement, has traveled a distance of 2,700 km in an ambulance to reach home in the district of Bongaigaon. The 60 hour trip cost them Rs 1.6 lakh.

The man's uncle, who had gone to the capital of Tamil Nadu separately for a checkup, returned with them.

My father has blockages in his heart. On March 4, together with my brother, I took him to Chennai in a train ambulance. There, doctors discovered that he also had kidney problems. He was recovering and our flight back to Guwahati was on March 18. But on March 17, my father's health suddenly deteriorated and he had to be admitted to the ICU, Baharul Islam said.

On March 30, doctors said they could take him back home in an ambulance with an ICU and oxygen supply supplies. Islam, with the help of his friend from Assam who works in Chennai, organized an ambulance and started the journey the next day.

“I was charged Rs 1.6 lakh for the ambulance. Along with my father, my uncle also came with us. There were two drivers and between them they drove for 23 hours each day. We left the hospital at 10 am on March 31 and arrived home at 10 pm on April 2, ”Islam said. He added that it cost Rs 1.2 lakh from Guwahati to Chennai in the train ambulance.

It was not the best trip for me ... loading two patients in an ambulance from Chennai was an experience I will never forget. But I am happy to be safe at home. We stopped a few times on the way to eat. We drive very fast since there was almost no traffic, Islam said.

Islam added that they were detained by the police twice, for about four hours in West Bengal and again for about two hours in Srirampur on the Assam-West Bengal border. “They reviewed our papers and let us go. When we reached Kajalgaon near our home, one of the drivers received a call to stop at the nearest hospital. All of us went to the Kajalgaon Civil Hospital, where the doctors carried out a check-up and sent us, including the two drivers, to home quarantine for 14 days, which ended on April 16, ”added Islam.

On the other hand, for Amitabh Das from Lalganesh in Guwahati, who had also taken his 80-year-old father to Apollo hospitals in Chennai for cancer treatment, taking the ambulance is not an option, as he has very little money left. now. Currently, he is staying in a hotel there.

“My father had cancer surgery and his age would not allow such a long road trip in an ambulance. Also, the fee for the road ambulance is 1.6 lakh rupees, which is out of my reach, said Das, who works at a bank.

Das's father was released from the hospital on March 27. Since then, Das, his sister, and his father have stayed at the Jayadha Homes Hotel on Greams Road in Chennai.

“My father received Rs 25,000 in his account from the Assam government. But that money is for your medicines. We have run out of cash and the only option now is to wait for the closing to end on May 3. Until then, we have to stay in Chennai, he said.